Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tenorman Rich Corpolongo and His Trio "Get Happy"

From what I understand Rich Corpolongo can take it out as well as remain inside. On his third (as far as I know anyway) CD Get Happy (Delmark 592) he fronts a trio of veteran jounrneymen (Dan Shapera, bass; Rusty Jones, drums) and they play in the later '50s pianoless trio style made popular by Sonny Rollins.

Now that in itself is not remarkable. What IS remarkable is the sheer joy you hear in their playing, which can sometimes be missing from the modern approach today. This is loose and advanced bebop in the Rollins-early Trane sort of bag. They cover standard standards like "Body and Soul" and "Lullaby of the Leaves" and a few of the more obscure Bird numbers ("Chi Chi," "Dewey Square"). It's a two-microphone recording in a resonant hall and so the sound matches the style perfectly.

But what matters is that the trio plays the music with all the inspired abandon it demands. Rusty Jones swings with all the nuance and verve of the Max-Roach-and-after school. Dan Shapera has that big bass sound that booms out welcomingly. And Rich Corpolongo can play a rapid line with the Chicago intensity of Von Freeman and the guys.

This is no repertoire band sort of thing. It has all the verve and commitment of those who genuinely love the style and have devoted many years to making the music LIVE. Corpolongo sounds especially terrific.

A great addition to your bebop holdings is what this could be. It's so good you start to forget it was made yesterday.

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